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Joe Boruchow

My black and white cutouts are an evolution from when I used stencils to make posters for my band, The Nite Lights. About ten years ago, as my technique improved, the stencils became too fragile to work with. I started to simply photocopy black paper cutouts and found that I was able to get much more coverage pasting and stapling these around town than I had with the stencils, all the while, retaining a fine art object.

My process varies with each paper cutout, but there are some things that remain consistent. From thumbnail sketches I develop more detailed studies that I then redraw on black paper paying special attention to the limits of the medium. In a paper cutout, all the black must connect (this makes things like belly buttons challenging). Then I excise all the white space with an Xacto blade, paint out the remaining pencil marks with black spray paint, and scan the cutout. From this I have large prints made, which I use for my large-scale installations.

The longer I have been doing uncommissioned public art the more I try to find architectural spaces to frame and add context to my work, ultimately, integrating it into the environment. In a gallery, however, one can to see the original cutouts from which the larger installations are made. Their intricacy and smaller scale often surprise people, giving them a new perspective on the public / private aspects of my work and emphasizing the blend of craft and concept that I attempt to achieve.

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